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How to: Choose the right houseplants for low light

How to: Choose the right houseplants for low light

Are You Feeling A Little Lost In The Dark When It Comes To Low Light Plants?

Are the plants you love the ones you can have? 

We get a lot of questions about low light spaces and which plants might suit the spot.

Questions like:

"What plants grow in little light?"

"How can I turn my shady indoor spot into an oasis of green foliage?"

"What is low light anyway?"

We hear you and we’ve all the answers right here. Go grab yourself a green tea and get ready to turn your crib into a foliage jungle.

Low light plants for your home  

Which Are The Best Plants For Low Light?

There are lots of plants that enjoy a shady space and the good news is they’re all gorgeous.

1. Anthuriums. Black Queen is a stunner with her almost black flowers and dark green leaves. She creates a really dark and dramatic space.

2. Syngonium Golden Illusion, sometimes called the Arrowhead plant, brightens a dark space with pale-green leaves and burnt rose veins.

3. Monstera is a leafy dream with irregular notched leaves that grow to several metres high.

4. Peperomia scandens ‘Variegata’ he's a total vining, plant. Locate the plant in a medium to low light situation away from direct sun.

5. Pothos plants hang and dangle from baskets, bookcases, and shelves in darker rooms.

6. Let’s not forget the ZZ plant. Our stunning Zanzibar gem loves to hang out in low light. He has a woody stem and will grow to 80cms tall.

7. Sansevieria is the ‘snake plant’ and low light is perfect for their thick fleshy stems These space savers point and grow upward to the heavens. Why not try this unusual plaited version.

8. Parlour Palms love a shady life. They thrive through drought conditions and are more than happy to chill in the shade.

9. Ferns are delicate creatures that naturally grow beneath larger canopies. A fern breaks up a group of thick-leaved companions with texture and froth.

10. This leafy beauty Dieffenbachia Splash is covered with buttery yellow splashes to brighten your dark space.

11. Aglaonema, also known as Chinese evergreen, is bright and cheerful in a low light back room. A great choice for colour in low light situations.

12. Ctenanthe is a striped, character-filled plant that shines out in the darker spaces. 

13. Peperomia Scandens is always happy in low light and her cascading vines with heart-shaped leaves brightens your day.

14. Ficus like this lovely splashed foliage Shivereana like some light but not bright and direct light. She’ll enjoy a spot in the corner that’s near a window but not facing it. 

There are so many plants that love low light, how will you ever choose?

Well, you don’t have to as we’ve curated a Dark Matters pack of 8, 16, 24, 32, or 40 leafy lovelies that enjoy a shady lifestyle.

As you’d expect, this a very popular pack. It seems that lots of you have low light levels.

Why Does Light Matter?

Many low light loving indoor plants are tropical babes that naturally grow beneath a shady canopy.  

They have big leaves to catch faint sun rays that filter down to the ground. It means they can’t cope with direct sunlight - they just get sunburnt and die.


All plants need some light because they use it to create their food.

Plants use air, chemical nutrients and water to make food but it’s light that stimulates the cooking – it’s called photosynthesis.

This means the low light plants we’ve listed above like it shady, but they still need some light to grow. If your room doesn’t have a window or a door all plants will struggle there, even if they’re ‘low light lovers’.

You can’t fight biology so go with the flow.   

How To Find Out If You Have Low Light Levels

We’re betcha thinking ‘How do I know if it’s low light?’ True, it’s not easy to guess if plants will like the conditions.  

So you’ll need to watch your light levels for a day. What happens in the morning, afternoon and evening? 

If sunlight falls onto the spot you’ve picked out for your shade loving plant it won’t be happy there.

This plant light meter app is handy. Point your phone towards the window and it’ll tell you what you’ve got.

How About Watering Low Light Plants?

Because there’s no direct sun to dry out the potting mix your plants probably won’t need much water as those in brighter conditions.

Test the soil with your finger. If its dry down to 1-2 inches give them a soak, then a misting to rub off accumulated dust, and finally allow them to drain free to avoid root rot.

If you’re unsure about watering grab a Sustee. These guys are great because when they’re blue no water is needed. It’s white? Time to drink.

A great tip is to take your plants outside when you water and let them soak up some rays too. Think of it as a top-up of light, it works wonders and you’ll see your plant look much perkier afterward.

Are There Any No-Nos?

Some plants love lots of light such as succulents. They’ll sulk in a shady spot, turn leggy, yellow and unhappy. Give these a miss if you’re dealing with low light.

Choosing The Right Place For The Right Plant

Before you buy anything stop and figure out your light levels.

If you try to force a plant to grow in a place that doesn’t suit its basic biology it’ll all end in tears. But the right plant in the right place is a beautiful, air-purifying happiness maker.

Choosing plants that love or tolerate low light levels is such a popular question that we’ve made a video all about it.

Have a watch, and if you have any more questions or need a hand just get in touch.

We can chat online or on the phone to pick out the right plants for your pad.

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